There’s absolutely no problem with getting to Ho Chi Minh City from anywhere in the world. As of May 2014, there were over 50 direct domestic and international flights to Ho Chi Minh City. Air New Zealand is the most recent to expand here, with direct flights beginning in June 2016. There are thousands more options via major aviation hubs.
The national carrier, Vietnam Airlines, has direct flights to around 22 cities in Asia, Europe, and Australia and reaches dozens more through code sharing with the other leading airlines. Click here to see more on Vietnamese Airlines including their code share arrangements.
Other airlines with direct flights to Ho Chi Minh City
Below is a list of other airlines with direct flights to Ho Chi Minh City, arranged according to the regions they service. They may appear in more than one list:
Australasia –Qantas, Air Asia, Air Asia X, Jetstar,
South East Asia – Air Asia, Air Asia X, Jetstar, Malaysian Airlines, Thai Airways, Singapore Airlines
North East and Central Asia – ANA, Japan Airlines, Asiana, Korean Airlines, Cathay Pacific, China Southern, China Eastern, Air China, Philippine Airlines, EVA, Air Astana
For the cheapest, and fastest journeys most Europeans will need to fly via Paris, Frankfurt, Moscow, Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Qatar, or a South East Asia hub like Kuala Lumpur.
The Americas – United, Cathay Pacific, Air Japan, Air China, Korean Air, China Southern Airlines, Quantas, Emirates, Qatar Airways
For the shortest and cheapest flights, North Americans will probably travel via Tokyo, Hong Kong, Korea, Taiwan or Hong Kong from the West Coast and possibly through the Middle East from the East Coast.
South Americans are best advised to go via New Zealand, and/or Australia or they may find themselves in the air or airports for the better part of 2 days.
The Best Way to Find Flights to Ho Chi Minh City
There are hundreds of other options for choosing flights to Ho Chi Minh City when you take into account code sharing arrangements with all these airlines and multi-stop tickets. My advice is to:
- Use a search engine such as Expedia, Vayama, Orbitz, or Skyscanner, to put in your initial criteria. The International Code for Ho Chi Minh City is SGN, a reference back to its old name Saigon. I usually prefer Expedia because it picks up the budget airlines such as Air Asia and Jetstar as well as Vietnam Airlines and the other majors. We also had a superb experience with their customer service when we needed to make urgent changes while in Africa. They provide the option to mix and match airlines where there is a distinct price advantage. While researching flights for our next European trip we found some excellent deals on Vayama and Orbitz. Sign up for alerts on this route to keep in tune with price fluctuations if you aren’t ready to book just yet.
- Once you have some options and an idea of the costs, got to the individual airline site e.g., Emirates, Qatar Airways, Etihad
- Visit or call your local travel agent and see if they can provide you with a better package. It has been my experience that the best bargains are on-line these days, but agents will sometimes have access to special deals, especially if you are booking a multi-stop or round the world ticket.
- If you are joining a tour, ask the company you are booking with to provide you with a quote. Once again, in my experience, you will find better value on-line, but you never know. Some companies will offer a discount on the land package if you book your flights through them. Do your sums carefully before you jump at any offer.
Once you have chosen and booked your flights, please consider taking out your travel insurance as soon as possible and ensure it covers trip cancellation due to unforeseen circumstances. We recommend Covermore (for Australians) or World Nomads (for everyone.) If you’re Australian and over 60 years old see this link
Be aware that the cheapest flight is not always the best option. Reducing the number and length of stop-overs and having inclusions such as baggage allowances, meals and beverages might save you money overall. Also, the cheapest flights are likely to have much more stringent conditions on refunds and changes. You might be well out of pocket if anything happens to prevent you taking that particular flight.
There is also the issue of arrival times. Ho Chi Minh City is not a great place to turn up to extremely late at night or very early in the morning unless you have your accommodation booked for at least the first night, and they are aware of when you are likely to turn up. It might also be a good idea to arrange your airport transfer ahead of time. Put together, these two requirements alone might cost you more than the savings on your ticket compared to arriving at a more convenient hour.
Domestic flights are relatively cheap and can save you days compared to a bus or train which will help immensely if your schedule is tight. Most flights will be extremely short, and you are likely to spend more time getting to the airport and going through check-in formalities than you will spend in the air.
Vietnam Airlines has the lion’s share of the domestic market although there are a couple of other airlines that visitors should investigate to popular destinations. Click Here for more information on Vietnam Airlines flights to Ho Chi Minh City.
Vietjet Airlines is a relatively new arrival on the scene. It began in 2011 with flights between Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi, and Danang. It has since expanded its network to include:
Haiphong, Vinh, Hue, Phu Quoc Island, Nha Trang, Quy Nhon, Dalat and Buon Ma Thuot. There are also many flights daily to Hanoi and Danang. We flew with them in 2012, just after they had started up and found them to be excellent. We also flew with them to Phu Quoc for TET 2015, and they were also great. Some of their promotional airfares are EXTREMELY cheap and are barely more than taking the bus or train. The uniforms are also very funky.
Jetstar has been running domestic and international flights in Vietnam since around 1991. Their domestic flights to Ho Chi Minh City originate from Hanoi, Danang, Haiphong, Vinh, Hue, Phu Quoc Island, Nha Trang, and Buon Ma Thuot.
VASCO is a small subsidiary of Vietnam Airlines and has been operating since 1987. It currently has daily flights to Ho Chi Minh City from 4 destinations – Ca Mau, Tuy Hoa, Chu Lai and Con Dao with a connection to Can Tho four days a week.
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